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Wisconsin Estate Planning Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Elder Law and Probate for Wisconsin on
Q: If your Mother is in a nursing home and she inherits $100,000. Who gets the money...nursing home or remaining children?

The mother has a bad case of Alzheimer's.

Sarah Lynn Ruffi
Sarah Lynn Ruffi answered on Apr 23, 2018

Since Mother has Alzheimer's, she should have a financial power of attorney (would need to have been signed prior to the Alzheimer's diagnosis) or a guardian appointed by the courts (if no power of attorney). The person in charge of Mother's money (Power of Attorney or Guardian) should be the... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law, Elder Law and Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: What is the best way for an adult child to buy her mother's house? Mother is in assisted living, house is paid off.

Are there ways to make this purchase while protecting the mother's assets? Alternative financing? Not using a real estate broker? Do siblings need to agree to the sale?

William F Sulton Esq.
William F Sulton Esq. answered on Apr 6, 2018

Your mother can transfer the property to you at any time by signing a deed. She could also use a will or trust.

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1 Answer | Asked in Wrongful Death, Estate Planning and Probate for Wisconsin on
Q: My son at just 41 years old passed on. He was living with a woman but not married. As his mother I am next of kin.

How do I access his belongings? He also has two precious children. What are my grandparent rights?

Thank you kindly for your time,

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Feb 26, 2018

Contact an estate attorney in the county where he was living. They can best discuss those issues.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Elder Law for Wisconsin on
Q: I had a land contract with my mother so she could stay in her house, However, she passed away before I took out a loan

In her will it states how much I paid towards the HP/escrow(x) throughout the years. It also states If any remaining mortgages & property expenses due (Y)and owing on my residences exceed the amount of kelly's purchase price after the credit is given. then her purchase price shall be increased in... Read more »

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi answered on Feb 2, 2018

Well, this is quite the pickle.

If I understand correctly you have a land contract where you are BUYING your mother's house for x dollars, but there is a mortgage against it in your mother's name for y dollars. The question is not whether X plus Y > value of the house. It is whether or not...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Family Law for Wisconsin on
Q: In Minnesota the eldest son inherits the family cabin unless being informed declines. What is the law in Wisconsin?

According to a banker I know with a lot of experience.

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi answered on Sep 12, 2017

You are misinformed about MN law. In MOST states (and MN and WI are in that crowd) IF children inherit without a will, ALL children inherit equally. There are situations where children will NOT inherit without a will in MN (For example, if there is a surviving spouse who is also the parent of the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Wisconsin on
Q: In Wisconsin is it legal to sign your real estate over to a relative prior to your death?

It used to be that it had to be a number of years prior to death. But someone told me that you can not do it at all any more.

Daniel J. Krause
Daniel J. Krause answered on Jul 20, 2017

You can sign your house over to anyone you like at any time. However, if you do this, it will affect your eligibility for Medicaid for 5 years. If you apply for Medicaid benefits (to pay for Nursing Home care, for instance) within 5 years of gifting your home (or anything else), you will incur a... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Wisconsin on
Q: My mother-in-law (age 75) would like to pay off her daughter's mortgage ($110K). Loan vs Gift?

My sister-in-law collects SSI for a special needs son. If she is given the money, it will disqualify her for SSI. My mother-in-law has suggested a low or no interest loan that would be forgiven in her will. They live in Wisconsin. What are the legal issues that need to be considered.

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi answered on Jul 19, 2017

This is FAR too complex a question for anyone to provide real advice in a forum like this. You NEED to consult with a local elder law / estate planning attorney and provide an opportunity to review all documents and discuss ALL of the situation. There are gift tax implications for a no-interest... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: Mom passed away before a deed transfer to me could be signed by her. I'm still paying the mortgage but what now?

My mother had became very ill In late February. She wanted to transfer the deed into my name upon her death, sadly she passed away last monday before she could sign the paperwork. I know she wanted me to have the home I just don't no what to do now. She don't owe much on it maybe 9,000. My question... Read more »

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi answered on Jul 4, 2017

If the house was in her name alone at the time of her death you need to go through probate to have it transferred now. Habitat for Humanity mortgages often contain 'unusual' clauses about transferring property so it would be wise to bring the paperwork to a local attorney to review to determine... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: Will outstanding medical bills have to be taken out of my estate when I pass away ?

I am responsible for paying off my late husband's considerable medical bills because Wisconsin is a community property state.( he had cancer ) I am hoping that I can leave any money I may have at the time of my death to my son.I have no other debt and do not own any property.I am 60 yrs old.

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi answered on May 15, 2017

Assuming you otherwise meet the means testing you can file bankruptcy to eliminate that debt. If your spouse were still alive you could have signed a post nup to prevent the debt from attaching to joint assets, but that ship has sailed. The only way to avoid the creditors from going after your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: Will medical debts be passed on to my child ( over 18 ), the spouse is deceased ? Does the estate have to pay them ?

I am paying off my late husband's medical bills, and will still not be paid by the time I die. I am 60 years old. I hope any meager amounts I may have in savings, etc. will not have to go to this bill.

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi answered on May 12, 2017

Depending on circumstances, YOU may not have to pay your husbands bills. Your children certainly won't. Before you make another payment, I would strongly suggest you consult with a local attorney to review the paperwork and bills to determine if you can walk away. Don't be afraid to negotiate even... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Wisconsin on
Q: Wills and trusts

My great grandpa dies back in September 2008 and my uncle was labeled as the trustee and he has simply diluted what was give to me to other family members with in his family also ive been alienated from the family since the passing of my great grandpa. My great grandpa lived in Wisconsin and his... Read more »

Jonathan R. Roth
Jonathan R. Roth answered on Mar 23, 2017

You have to file a Complaint in Wisconsin.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: If a will is made out previous to going to a nursing home are the values to each person listed in the will valid?

Went to a nursing home for an extended period of time-all property assets used up except for assets in will for son/daughter/grandchildren-will was made out before he went into nursing home-are the values in the will still the values to be distributed according to his wishes- are will assets... Read more »

Brendan Lee McAvoy
Brendan Lee McAvoy answered on Feb 23, 2016

In general, a will is the written documentation of the intent of the testator. If the assets are gone, it is unlikely that they could be distributed according to the will. A lot depends on if they are percentage distribution or specific monetary values. I would contact an attorney for a review of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: Can a person who has a financial power of attorney pass it to another? Without legal permission?
Brendan Lee McAvoy
Brendan Lee McAvoy answered on Feb 23, 2016

Passing a durable power of attorney (POA) generally requires a new POA to be executed by the principle, and based on your state this POA needs to be notarized, signed in the presence of two witnesses, or both.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: My Dad passed away 2 weeks ago with no Will. He had no spouse, only 3 children.

He had no spouse, only 3 children. He left only his personal belongings, some of which have monetary resale value, others sentimental value (no bank accounts, etc). All of his personal belongings were moved to one of my sister's houses when we moved him into a nursing home 2 years ago.... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Nov 9, 2015

Although personal property like this might be distributed by affidavit (if such procedure is available in your state) you need a court order to get the items from your sister. Call an attorney in your state who does probate matters.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: Is there such a thing as assigning my unpaid mortgage to my heirs using my equity for their benefit?

Question speaks for its self.

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Oct 17, 2015

If you leave the property to someone designated in you will, the property will be subject to the mortgage.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: Should I have an attorney to help me make a "Trust" for my kids?

I am trying to help my aging parents come to terms with what they want done with there assets before they pass on.So I m trying not rock the boat here. Can anybody help?

Charles Snyderman
Charles Snyderman answered on Jul 5, 2014

Absolutely.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: What is the difference between formal and informal administration of an estate?
Peter Navis
Peter Navis answered on Feb 22, 2012

The primary distinction is that formal administration is overseen by a judge whereas informal administration is overseen by the Register in Probate. If there are going to be issues that must be decided by a judge (contested will provision, for example), then formal administration is the way to go.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: AS A LIFE INS BENEFICIARY RECEPIENT, IS THE "INHERITED" MONEYS SHARED WITH A SPOUSE?

MY FRIEND LOST HER GRANDSON IN THE ARMED FORCES, WAS LISTED AS A BENEFICIARY ON HIS LIFE INSURANCE POLICY. IS HER HUSBAND ENTITLED TO HALF OF IT, OR IS IT PROTECTED UNDER WISCONSIN STATUTE 815.18 (2)(5K)? EXCLUSIONS OF MARITALL PROPERTY IN THE STATE OF WISCONSIN

Peter Navis
Peter Navis answered on Feb 22, 2012

Generally, proceeds from a life insurance policy will be considered individual property, rather than marital property. However, it is possible for individual property to lose its status as individual property if it gets mixed with marital property.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Wisconsin on
Q: Is an inheritence of home sales funds, annuity or trust funds taxable?

The inheritence will come from Illinois and we live in WI

Daniel J. Krause
Daniel J. Krause answered on Jun 2, 2011

The answer to this question depends on a few things: 1-the size of the entire estate, including life insurance, IRAs, real estate, etc. If the estate was large enough to have an estate tax, then the tax will have to be paid before you get the property. 2- what year did the decedent die? This is... Read more »

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